Afternoon Sex

by Graham Murtaugh

The unexpected connection
unloading groceries. The purple eggplant
molded perfectly to your hand. I bend
to close the dishwasher and turn
into you. A mimic dance, a moment
where we roam, dip into cups and pockets
before the call goes out: all hands report!
Move to the bedroom, quickly shuck shirts
and jeans and socks and tangled bra
all helter-skelter, dive under covers.
The mail slot bangs. The neighbors
with the yapping dogs chat just beyond
the window. We keep quiet, cram
our greedy mouths full of the other’s tongue,
grip the handholds God so knowingly provided
and hang on. We riot in silence.
Quick as a summer shower it passes, trailing
a sparkling curtain and the scent of wet pavement.
We collapse, spent, sleeping the incautious sleep
of unlooked-for victory.

Graham Murtaugh is a poet, writing workshop facilitator and civic engagement wonk. He lives and writes in Portland, Oregon. More of his work can be seen online at